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Fiona Bone And Nicola Hughes: Vigil For Murdered Policewomen As Funeral Dates Released

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A police officer bows her head at the vigil for her murdered colleagues
A police officer bows her head at the vigil for her murdered colleagues

The funeral arrangements of two murdered policewomen have been released as their relatives joined hundreds of their colleagues and the public for a vigil and minute's silence.

Pcs Fiona Bone, 32, and Nicola Hughes, 23, had been called to a burglary on the Hattersley estate in Tameside, Greater Manchester, when they were attacked last Tuesday morning.

Hundreds of people gathered near Abbey Gardens, Hattersley, where the silence was observed at 10.58am on Tuesday to mark a week since the attack.

At the entrance to the road was a stage with two large pictures of the fallen constables, whose funerals will take place over two days at Manchester Cathedral.

The funeral of Pc Hughes will be on 3 October at 1pm, and the service for Pc Bone will take place at 10am the following morning.

Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy and Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan led Greater Manchester Police at today's vigil.

fiona bone nicole hughes

Fiona Bone, left, and Nicola Hughes were killed last week in a gun and grenade attack

Rank and file police officers standing nearby, some carrying candles, bowed their heads in sombre thought as the silence was observed.

Members of the public crowded under umbrellas to shelter from the relentless rain.

Chief Superintendent Nick Adderley, the top officer in the Tameside Division for Greater Manchester Police (GMP), said: "The numbers of people that are here today not only symbolises the popularity of what Nicola and Fiona stood for.

"But it is also a symbol of hope that actually, within the community, we want to rid these communities of individuals that cause fear, cause misery.

"Together, as a consequence of Nicola and Fiona's deaths, we are determined ever more to do that."

Community volunteer Elsie Dixon paid tribute to the two officers and said their deaths would not be in vain.

She said Hattersley was a "community in mourning", adding: "Those two girls are precious.

"We are a community that care, not just for ourselves but for each other and for the people that serve our community.

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"Our police officers are part of our community and those girls were special."

She said: "Yes, we are hurting. But the families, friends and colleagues of those two young lasses are hurting a damn sight more."

Struggling to compose herself, Mrs Dixon added: "Our hearts are overflowing with tears.

"As many rain drops as you see, as many petals as you see on the flowers. Those tears are within each of our hearts."

As she finished her speech she was given a hug and kissed on the head by Mr Adderley, who thanked her for her words.

The Reverend James Halstead said a prayer for the murdered policewomen and their families.

Addressing the crowd, Sir Peter described GMP as "one big family".

He added: "We have lost two members of our family and we feel that loss very, very deeply."

He said the force and the families of the women had been "hugely moved and uplifted" by the support shown by the public in the local community, Manchester and around the world.

"We treasure the memory of Fiona and Nicola," he added, saying their "great service" symbolised the work done by police officers day in, day out.

After the 10-minute vigil was over many people gathered around the large number of floral tributes to leave their own flowers and read the cards and messages.

Dale Cregan has appeared in court accused of the murder of the officers.

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